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2021 Genesis G70 Performance Review

Scorecard

Performance: 8.5

The 2021 Genesis G70 may falter when it comes to fuel economy, but the rest of its performance stands out. It has a capable base engine and an energetic V6 option, and it blends ride comfort and agility into a neat package.

  • "… it’s only recently that sport sedans have ballooned to almost midsize proportions. The G70 is definitely compact, which is a major reason why it’s such a pleasure to drive." -- Autotrader
  • "The G70 is an overwhelmingly capable car, balancing regular, speed-limit abiding commutes with exciting spirited-drive capabilities. It always felt alert due to its harder ride, and the heavier and precise steering and lighter curb weight made it quick and agile." -- Jalopnik (2019)
  • "On the road, this thing is a shark. Quiet and bitey, able to cruise comfortably, ready to burst into action with a twist of the drive mode knob." -- Autoblog (2019)

Engine Options, Horsepower, and Acceleration

  • Base engine: turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 252 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque (2.0T)
  • Available engine: twin-turbocharged 3.3-liter V6 with 365 horsepower and 376 pound-feet of torque (3.3T)
  • Drivetrain: standard rear-wheel drive; available all-wheel drive
  • Transmission: standard eight-speed automatic; available six-speed manual

The base engine is capable in regular driving scenarios. It packs plenty of power, but it’s also noisy, and the automatic transmission, while fine, is a touch slower to shift than in competitors.

When equipped with the larger engine and Launch Control, the G70 can race from zero to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds.

  • "Our engine choice would be the V6. It’s smooth, torque-rich and feels world-class, blowing away many pricier competitors. The turbocharged 4-cylinder is among the most powerful in its category, but it’s not as refined as rival units and sounds like it belongs more in a hot hatchback than a luxury car. The 8-speed automatic transmission does the job, but lacks the responsiveness of BMW or Mercedes-Benz units when driving aggressively, so well-timed downshifts are key. This is a minor nitpick, but it matters with performance-oriented cars." -- Autotrader
  • "Many drivers should like the 2.0T engine, which can also be paired with a 6-speed manual transmission. Clutch action is light and linear. Although the gearshift could be more precise, it’s still fun and lively. Most buyers, though, will probably select the 8-speed automatic transmission, and that’s absolutely fine." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Its engine felt reserved around town, and acceleration times were ordinary. The light clutch pedal and numb shifter engagement also tempered our excitement. At least the manual 2.0T was more playful when paired with the Sport package. However, our heart skipped a beat when we got behind the wheel of the beastly twin-turbo 3.3-liter V-6 model." -- Car and Driver (2020)

MPG Estimates

Whichever engine you pick will return subpar gas mileage for a luxury small car.

  • 2.0-liter, automatic, RWD: 22/30 mpg city/highway
  • 2.0-liter, automatic, AWD: 20/27 mpg
  • 2.0-liter, six-speed, RWD: 18/28 mpg
  • 3.3-liter, RWD: 17/26 mpg
  • 3.3-liter, AWD: 17/25 mpg

Handling and Braking

The G70 strikes a good balance between athleticism and refinement. Its sharp steering, multiple drive modes, and controlled body roll make it pretty engaging to drive. Performance upgrades, such as Brembo brakes, boost sportiness even further. At the same time, the suspension facilitates a gentle ride by smoothing out most road flaws.

  • "Another crucial factor … is ride and handling. The G70 achieves a superb balance between poise and plushness, with some information coming up through the steering wheel, but not too much for a luxury car." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The steering is excellent. The suspension strikes a fine balance between comfort and reducing body roll, and the optional adaptive suspension improves matters even more. The all-wheel drive system is a boon in bad weather, but also helps get the power to the pavement in dry conditions." -- Autotrader
  • "The G70 has expertly balanced ride and handling characteristics. Its suspension smoothed out uneven surfaces, and the sedan remained composed during spirited cornering sessions. … Its steering feedback is precise and pleasant, with adjustable effort available by switching among the multiple drive modes." -- Car and Driver (2020)
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2021 Genesis G70

MSRP: $36,000 - $48,200

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